six days and counting without coffee

what did you give up?

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

It seems that whenever it’s not the Lenten season I have no problem figuring out what I would give up for Lent. Then, the Lenten season sneaks up and I have no idea what to give up. In years past I gave up the classics: sweets, chocolate, soda. Yes, those are always challenging items. But last year, I wanted a real challenge. Last year, I gave up cheese. Yup, you read that right CHEESE. A classic Wisconsinite staple and I was abstaining from consumption of all cheese items. When it came down to the nuts and bolts of it, it included anything really with the word “cheese” in it, for example, cream cheese, cheese spread, and cheese item those were all out. 45 days without cheese may have been one of the most challenging and most difficult things I have ever done, but I did it.

Needless to say, after a year like that, I couldn’t very well “top” what I would give up this starbucks-iced-coffee-156x300year. I could come close, but nothing can top cheese.  As you know, Lent started last week and I was a half day in without coffee when I uttered the words, “well, I guess I will give up coffee for Lent.” It’s been 6 days and the effects are surprisingly sparse. Now, understand I am by no means going caffeine-free, but 45 days sans coffee seems rather similar. Rather than having a morning coffee, I opt for tea. I’ve been downing tea like a camel hoping to see the same effects as coffee, but there’s just no use. Truthfully, it’s not that bad. I can last 39 more days.

You’re probably scratching your head thinking, “Lent is only 40 days why does she keep saying 45?” Though traditional Lent doesn’t count Sundays, I do. What’s the point of giving yourself a “cheat day” when Jesus didn’t get one? What’s the point of the cheat day now? If you are giving up smoking you don’t giving yourself the option to have a cigarette on Sundays.

April 5th, you will find all of these iced coffee options (and more) in my refrigerator. Just give me a straw and I will be good to go. Starbucks should probably sponsor my iced coffee habit that day._-Stsarbucks-iced-group-shot-page-14_slide

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embrace it

& be proud

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

I bleed red and white, green and gold, and blue and gold. I will never be able to shake those long “O’s.” Despite the season, the Badgers, Brewers and Packers are always on my radar. I can never get enough cheese, and PBR is my kind of beer. I can pronounce any place you point to on the map, and I will argue that we have more lakes than Minnesotawisconsin pride.

Folks, Wisconsin is my home and it always will be. For the past three years, I have lived in DC and I still get butterflies when I land in the motherland. I still get excited when I see a fellow Wisconsinite walking around DC repping my state. Wisconsin has state pride like I’ve never seen or experienced before. I know Texas would argue they have the most state pride, but I respectfully disagree. Wisconsin has camaraderie.

I’m sure it’s evident that I have undying state pride and love for Wisconsin, and frankly, that’s a burning passion that I will always have.

Over the weekend, I got in a heated argument with a friends’ friend I met. As we were making introductions and creating small talk, (let’s call him) Bill asked me where I was from and I proudly exclaimed, “WISCONSIN!” I countered and asked him where he was from. After much hesitation he answered, “New York…City.” With his response, this was something I was not pleased with or something that I was going to let stand by the wayside, I again asked again, “No, where are you really from?” Bill again hesitated and finally responded, “Chicago.” The conversation goes like this for a while and I finally get Bill to tell me where he is from after I told him I was very familiar with the “Chicago-area.”

I will give you the same talk that I dished out to Bill on Saturday night. Be proud of where you are from. Take pride in your upbringing and where you came from. Where you are from has a lot to do with who you are now. And truth be told, being a coward about your roots is almost an insult to your parents and how they raised you.

When you think of Wisconsin, what comes to mind? Probably the Green Bay Packers and cheese, and with good reason. The Packers are a storied NFL franchise, but as the foam cheese hats the Packers fans wear indicate, the real pride of Wisconsin are the people, the sports, the seasons, the beer, the cheese and the list will only continue.

Until the day I die, I bleed Wisconsin through and through. If it wasn’t for my Wisconsin and Midwestern upbringing, a lot would be different and I sincerely take pride in being from the great state of Wisconsin and being a true Midwestern.